Tag Archives: Milk

Wet nursing: a historical perspective

Mariella Scerri Mellieha, Malta   A Russian wet nurse, c. 1913. Painted by Frederic de Haenen public domain via Wikimedia. Wet nursing, a form of breastfeeding provided by someone other than an infant’s biological mother,1 has a long and sometimes controversial history. Death in childbirth, a mother’s illness, as well as cultural habits and circumstance […]

Did Salvador Dali follow the prolactin discovery in his painting of the fountain of milk?

Michael Yafi Houston, Texas, United States   Salvador Dalí, Fundació Gala-Salvador Dalí, Artists Rights Society © 2019 The Fountain of milk spreading itself uselessly on three shoes by Salvador Dali remains one of his most enigmatic works. It shows a nude woman on a pedestal, milk flowing from her breasts, while an emaciated man is […]

“Blood made White”: the relationship between blood and breastmilk in early modern England

Jennifer Evans Sara Read United Kingdom   Womb (uterus), enlarged, Hendrik Bary, after Reinier de Graaf, 1672, Rijksmuseum. The early modern body was thought to be composed of and ordered by an intricate balance of fluids, the most important of which was blood. Blood was universally understood to have two origins: the heart and the […]